• Posts
  • RSS
  • ◂◂RSS
  • Contact

  • Perpetuities via Frozen Embryos?

    April 29th, 2014
    future, ideas, law  [html]
    Should I be able to will my mandolin to you with the restriction that it never be used to play a particular tune I dislike? It's my property so I should be able to dispose of it as I wish but is it really reasonable for people 200 years from now to be restricted in how they play the instrument?

    We want to balance the rights of current and future generations, and this gives a public policy question: how long after your death should you still be able to control the use of what was yours? Since 1682 the answer to "how long" has been the relatively complicated Rule Against Perpetuities, setting the limit as:

    twenty-one years after the death of some life in being at the creation of the interest.

    This is a very complicated way of defining a time period, but at least for most of history it's been relatively limited. Making things confusing, however, is that an unborn child is considered to be a "life in being" for the purposes of this rule. While no one has tried this in court, it's possible that this includes frozen embryos. [1] In which case you could make a perpetual trust by specifying a cryogenically preserved embryo as the "measuring life" for the purposes of the trust, and including in the trust the stipulation that the embryo remain frozen.

    I kind of hope someone does this so I can read the court's opinion, but policywise we should probably just scrap the traditional rule and switch to a simple fixed limit of N years.


    [1] Extensive discussion in Gametes, Embryos and the Life in Being: The Impact of Reproductive Technology on the Rule Against Perpetuities (McCrimmon, 2000).

    Comment via: google plus, facebook

    Recent posts on blogs I like:

    Fireside Friday, January 22, 2021

    It’s the first week of classes, so fireside this week. Next week, we’ll dive into a short series looking at the question of the ‘universal warrior,’ the idea – too often repeated – that there is either a single consistent experience or personality true to…

    via A Collection of Unmitigated Pedantry January 22, 2021

    Poor Rich Countries and Isomorphic Mimicry

    A curious pattern can be found in subway construction costs around the world, based on GDP per capita. On the one hand, poor countries that have severe cultural cringe, such as former colonies, have high construction costs, and often the worst projects ar…

    via Pedestrian Observations January 21, 2021

    What is going on in the world?

    Crossposted from world spirit sock puppet. Here’s a list of alternative high level narratives about what is importantly going on in the world—the central plot, as it were—for the purpose of thinking about what role in a plot to take: … Continue reading →

    via Meteuphoric January 17, 2021

    more     (via openring)


  • Posts
  • RSS
  • ◂◂RSS
  • Contact